There’s a very interesting article up at Raw Story about Trump’s never ending insistence that he’s smart. So smart, super smart, bigly smart! It’s a low level annoyance, because it’s obviously not true, and as pointed out in the article, most people who are smart have no particular need to say so. That said, there are people who are, at least, technically smart, who seem to have a pathological need to parade that fact, and I’ve always found that to be nothing more than insecurity. When you’re a kid, it’s not fun being the egghead. Maybe that’s changed, I don’t know, but back in the day, you’d get ganged up on for being a smarty pants, so mostly you didn’t go around bragging or anything. Just tried to stay invisible in the corner, with your stack of books behind you. I don’t care about IQs, those are meaningless, and as for grades, well, those aren’t exactly a reliable indicator, either.
Smart is what you do with it. People who are curious, who read, and delight in a lifelong love of learning, that’s smart. People who are capable of thinking beyond all the tropes, clichés, stereotypes, and other bullshit, that’s smart. And so on. I love reading, I’ve had my nose in a book since always, and for me, people that read, I find them to be reassuring and comforting. And generally speaking, not only willing to think, but they love to think.
Trump doesn’t read. At all. That disturbed me no end when it first came out, and it still does. His compleat lack of a vocabulary disturbs the hell out of me too, I’ve often commented on the fact that he talks like a child. Bush Jr could barely string a sentence together, and he looks like a bloody rocket scientist next to Trump. “That’s the big stuff.” That’s what he says about major governmental decisions and policy. Anyone who is capable of thinking is left wondering “what does that mean?” Turns out, lately, what that means is “look what a big bully I am! Do what I say!” A stupid, unthinking, short-sighted bully, that’s our dictator. As the criticisms and doubt amp up, Big Bully Donny is going to get a whole lot worse. It’s barely been two weeks, and already…
Anyone who feels compelled to boast about how smart he is clearly suffers from a profound insecurity about his intelligence and accomplishments. In Trump’s case, he has good reason to have doubts.
Trump has the kind of street smarts (what he calls “gut instinct”) characteristic of con artists and hucksters, but his limited vocabulary, short attention span, ignorance of policy specifics, indifference to scientific evidence, and admitted aversion to reading raise questions about his intellectual abilities; his capacity to absorb and analyze information and ideas.
Many observers have noted that Trump has a difficult time expressing himself and speaking in complete sentences. A linguistic analysis by Politico found that Trump speaks at a fourth-grade level. A study by researchers at Carnegie-Mellon University compared last year’s Republican and Democratic presidential candidates in terms of their vocabulary and grammar. Trump scored at a fifth-grade level, the lowest of all the candidates.
Some might suspect this is not an intellectual shortcoming but instead Trump’s calculated way of communicating with a wide audience. But Tony Schwartz, who spent a great deal of time with the real estate developer while ghostwriting his book The Art of the Deal, noted that Trump has a very limited vocabulary.
Anyone who has ever bothered to skim what Trump supporters have to say, in letters, comments, tweets, what have you, there’s a noted similarity in smarts. And that’s frightening. You don’t need to be a bloody genius, but most people should at least want to be able to think, and to be able to parse things correctly, and have the means to communicate effectively.
The appeal to stupidity and ignorance is a dangerous one, and it has already proved to the be the match which set the fire.
The article is here.
Here’s a fine example of happy to be stupid and ignorant Americans:
“I feel that if a Muslim woman wants to move into this country, she needs to leave her towel home,” Bill explained. “Because the reason this country is here and safe today is because of Jesus Christ.”
It’s a hijab. Simple word, not at all hard to learn. It’s not a towel, it’s a head covering, much like those rags on your heads, oh, I mean hats. While you probably should always have your towel, that’s a universe thing, per Douglas Adams. That’s one of those book things.
He continued: “We were one nation under God. The Muslims are into Allah.
:Bangs head into wall: PLACEHOLDER. The word “god” is generic, it does not point to any particular god, that requires a name. It means ‘supreme being’. Allah means “god”, yep, ‘supreme being’. In point of fact, it happens to be the same fucking god, and I’m damn tired of pointing that out. Abrahamaic based religions: Judaism, Islam, Christianity. Same books, same god, different interpretations. And there was no “one nation under god” until genocidal assholes found their way to Turtle Island, and of course that sort of shit was reinforced during the cold war. For Chrissakes, learn something. If willfully stupid people are going to insist on being stupid, the least you could do is shut the fuck up. Try to read a book or something.
Oh, and what was our super genius president doing yesterday, as one crisis after another was unfolding? Having a private screening of Finding Dory.
CNN producer Kevin Liptak revealed on Sunday that the president’s family had chosen to screen Finding Dory, Pixar’s film about a cartoon fish who is torn apart from her family and placed in a public aquarium.